10 huge players who are currently going on free transfers in summer 2018
The transfer window closed a fortnight ago after what seemed like a never-ending summer of rumours, insanely expensive deals and everything in between. We've now dusted ourselves down to get ready for a prolonged period of club football – but fans are still pondering future movement; particularly those whose contracts are soon to expire.
The Bosman rule states that foreign clubs can approach a player freely once he enters the final six months of his contract, whereas domestic outfits have to wait until its expiration. Below are 10 exciting players who will be available to overseas sides in just three-and-half-months' time.
We've left Lionel Messi out because his Barcelona extension looks like a formality, but there are still some fine footballers who could be up for grabs as things stand.
10. Marcos Llorente (Real Madrid)
Chelsea and Spurs have both been heavily linked to the talented anchorman
Llorente shone on loan for Alaves last term and has returned to battle for minutes under Zinedine Zidane. However, with the likes of Casemiro, Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Mateo Kovacic competing for game time in midfield, the 22-year-old has his work cut out.
What happens next? Chelsea and Spurs have both been heavily linked to the talented anchorman, with reports suggesting Real Madrid could cash in come January to avoid losing Llorente for a small compensatory fee.
9. Leon Goretzka (Schalke)
Goretzka's performances have dramatically improved this calendar year and many believe it's time for him to make the next step in his career
The powerhouse midfielder looks unlikely to extend the contract he signed in 2013 when he joined Schalke from Bochum. Goretzka's performances have dramatically improved this calendar year and many believe it's time for him to take the next step in his career.
What happens next? Jurgen Klopp is a big fan of the 22-year-old, who could follow in former team-mate Joel Matip's footsteps by moving from Schalke to Liverpool on a free. Bayern Munich are also hovering, however, as they often do when top German talent is involved.
8. Jose Gimenez (Atletico Madrid)
He's previously been linked to Manchester United, but there's no better manager to help him fulfil his potential than Diego Simeone
The brutish Uruguayan spent much of last campaign on Atleti's bench behind Diego Godin and Stefan Savic, but he appears to have climbed above the latter in this season's pecking order. Once regarded as the best young centre-back in the world, Gimenez may be more willing to extend his deal if he keeps his place in the team.
What happens next? Atletico suits Gimenez, and vice versa. He's previously been linked to Manchester United, but there's no better manager to help him fulfil his potential than Diego Simeone.
7. Alassane Plea (Nice)
The feisty Frenchman is comfortable either wide left or as a centre-forward
The feisty Frenchman is comfortable either wide left or as a centre-forward, having bagged 14 goals in all competitions in 2016/17. He has three from five games this term, proving he's picked up from where he left off.
What happens next? At 24, Plea will be a very attractive Bosman option for most clubs; mid-table Premier League sides will no doubt be monitoring his situation closely. West Ham wanted the attacker in 2016, so the chance to acquire him for nothing will surely be attractive to the Hammers.